A spokesperson for Forestry Corporation of NSW has responded to the article Mogo logging at 22 cents per tree or leave it to be enjoyed by mountain bike park saying: Good Afternoon,
Your recent article presented some incorrect and misleading information about carbon and the cost of managing native forests and incorrectly stated that there were no protections in place for Swift Parrot or other species in timber harvesting operations.
State forests sequester significantly more carbon than timber harvesting operations produce. Around one per cent of native forests are harvested each year, which is 0.1 per cent of the broader forested landscape and we fully regrow ever tree that we harvest. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change recognises that sustainably managed production forests that maintain carbon in growing trees while producing an annual yield of timber deliver a large, sustained climate change mitigation benefit. Timber is the most renewable building product available and carbon credits are not available for stopping sustainable timber harvesting because research has demonstrated that this is likely to lead to perverse environmental outcomes. This is because carbon calculations must take into account the impact of sourcing timber and wood products from elsewhere or of using alternative, more carbon intensive, products such as concrete and steel.
State forests are carefully managed to ensure they are harvested responsibly and fully regrown so that they continue to provide environmental, economic and social benefits for future generations. The same State forests have been continually harvested and regrown for more than 100 years. Compartment 146 of Mogo State Forest was last harvested in 2006 and has completely regenerated and will be completely regenerated again after upcoming operations.
In line with the strict regulations in place in NSW, harvesting operations in this compartment will encompass protections for wildlife habitat, including the Swift parrot, and other important environmental and forest features. Surveys and broad area habitat searches are carried out prior to every forestry operation to identify records and ensure suitable habitat is set aside. Within the harvest area, protection is afforded mature trees via identification and retention of hollow-bearing trees, giant-trees and various nest, den, roost trees and nectar or feed trees.
The cost of managing native forests is predominately the cost of managing land for the community and providing facilities like mountain bike trails, roads, camping grounds and picnic areas for free community use, as well as managing fire, pests and weeds across the estate. The cost of these activities is offset by revenue from timber production.
NSW State Forests contain hundreds of kilometres of mountain bike tracks across NSW, more than any other type of public land, and many of these tracks are in forests that are occasionally harvested for timber and regrown. Forestry Corporation works in partnership with mountain bike clubs and regional councils to develop and maintain ecotourism and adventure activities while continuing to produce sustainable timber.
In Mogo State Forest, Forestry Corporation is working with Eurobodalla Council and Mogo Local Aboriginal Land Council to develop an outstanding new mountain bike network. Mogo State Forest is a regrowth forest that has been harvested for timber in the past and regrown and the new mountain bike facility will be designed to operate alongside ongoing renewable timber harvesting operations into the future.